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28 October 2004

Board of Scrutiny


Noon, Thursday 28 October 2004



New SCR, Selwyn College


Present: Stephen Cowley, Margaret Glendenning, John Little, Timothy Milner, Saskia Murk-Jansen, David Phillipson, Nick Pyper, Jennifer Rigby, John Spencer (Chairman), Helen Thompson (Secretary)


In attendance: Tessa Payne



1.      Apologies

Nicholas Holmes                       


2.      Minutes of previous meeting



3.      Matters arising

It was noted that Margaret Glendenning should be recorded as present (not as in attendance) at the meeting held on 30 September, as her election had been with  effect from 15 July 2004.


It was agreed that the Chairman would continue negotiations with Susan Bowring regarding the filling of the vacancy on the Board – this is expected to be early in the  Lent term.


4.      Ninth Report - Discussion

It was agreed that the comments made regarding the Ninth Report at the Discussion on 26 October would be considered in conjunction with the detailed response from the Council, and that any response would be made in the Tenth Report.


It was agreed that in future it would be appropriate for the Board to be more aware of any central committees on which its members sat, and potential conflicts of interest that might arise, particularly in relation to those committees that could be criticised.   


5.      Visit to Director of Personnel

It was noted that the visit to the Director of Personnel will take place on Monday 1 November from 14.15 – 15.30hrs. 


It was noted that the original reasons for proposing the introduction of HERA across the University were entirely valid (namely to enable the University to reward staff appropriately, to enable it to compete in the global market, and to provide a robust pay and grading structure), and that the concerns of the Board related to the methodology employed, not to HERA itself.


Concerns were also voiced that cost of poor implementation could be considerably greater than the potential financial penalty for missing the deadline for HERA’s introduction within the University.


It was agreed that Stephen Cowley would circulate a paper identifying the issues that might be raised at the meeting, and would co-ordinate the responses.


6.      Progress to Board response on HERA etc

It was agreed that further work would take place on the Board’s response to HERA following the meeting with the Director of Personnel.


7.      Request to Secretary to review Board of Graduate Studies

The Board considered the correspondence received by the Secretary voicing concerns about the process of allocating graduate students to colleges, and the time taken by various trusts to confirm funding to graduate students.


It was agreed that a meeting with the Board of Graduate Studies should be requested, and that the Secretary would reply to the correspondent advising them of this, but also indicating that the Board are unlikely to be able to assist to any great extent with the concerns raised regarding student funding.


8.      Dates and places of future meetings

The next meeting will be held at noon in the New SCR on Thursday 11 November unless otherwise advised.


The Chairman advised the meeting that during the Lent Term he would be unable to attend meetings of the Board on Thursdays due to prior commitments. It was agreed that the options of either changing the day the Board meetings were held, or appointing an alternate Chairman for the term would be discussed at the next meeting.


9.      Any other business

There was no other business.